Reg has served Equestrian sport in Australia for 58 years as a great administrator and has been inducted this year into the Equestrian Australia Hall of Fame for Service to Sport.
The Equestrian Australia (EA) Hall of Fame is the sport's opportunity to recognise the lifetime achievements and efforts of its members in Equestrian sport. Australia's success on the international sporting arena has earned the country a reputation as one of the top Equestrian nations in the world. This reputation is due to extraordinary achievements and dedication by EA members over the years. Introduced for the first time in 2010, the Hall of Fame will forever honour EA's greatest achievers.
Reg Cleland is one of the few people who has a full understanding of all disciplines from showing to reining and the Olympic disciplines. During 58 years of service to the sport, he has never requested payment, has travelled thousands of hours to assist at all sorts of events.
He began in 1960, training as a showjumping course designer and judge under Lester Lowerson and Colin Kelly. Reg has always liked working with young people and was vice chairman of the Victorian Pony Club Association for many years, and gave clinics, and training days to assist the youngsters.
He was influential in creating the Equestrian Victoria Young Rider of the Year awards, and event which recognizes the achievements of young riders in all disciplines.
Reg served on the Equestrian Victoria board for more than 20 years and is a life committee member and was EV Branch Chairman for eight years. He was a member of the Equestrian Australia’s National board for 11 years and a showjumping selector for several years.
He was, for many years the chairman of the world-famous Barastoc Horse of the Year Show, and during his time as EV chairman, he oversaw the creation of the two indoor arenas, and stable blocks, at Werribee Park. During the infamous Equine Influenza outbreak he worked at the Centre without pay, to keep it in good condition until it could be used again.
As an Australian course designer he travelled to Warendorf to a course designer’s conference in 1979 with the late Ted Dwyer.
Back in Australia, one of his protégés was John Vallance, and many of today’s course designers have done their first course design jobs under his guidance.
Reg was chairman of the Melbourne Showjumping Club, for 20 years. He was listed in the Victorian Showjumping Hall of Fame in 2012, and was awarded the Australian Sports Medal for service to Equestrian sport in 2001 and in 2016 was honoured by the Equestrian Victoria Branch to be in the Victorian Hall of Fame.
Equestrian Australia Chair, Judy Fasher presented the Hall of Fame medal to Reg in front of the Eventing community, at the Melbourne International 3 Day Event in Victoria.
"Reg is a shining example of how volunteers drive Equestrian sport. No job is too hard, no day too long".
Wayne Roycroft as Coach of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games Australian Eventing Team received a new Hall of Fame induction and when receiving his medal, he dedicated it to Reg's lifetime achievements.
At the Beijing Olympic Games in 2008, the Australian Eventing Team of Clayton Fredericks, Lucinda Fredericks, Sonja Johnson, Megan Jones and Shane Rose took the Silver Medal in a thrilling finish. It was a hard fought battle in which the riders and horses pushed Germany every step of the way. The Australian team started strong in the Dressage phase to get a head start on the rest of the competition. The Australian riders followed up with impressive cross country rides with all five riders finishing without jumping penalty points.
Australia-based riders Shane Rose, Megan Jones and Sonja Johnson were presented their award earlier this year at the Sydney International 3 Day Event in NSW.
On behalf of Equestrian Australia Members, staff, athletes and the wider Equestrian community around the world, we would like to sincerely thank Reg Cleland and Wayne Roycroft for his superb contribution to the sport and for inspiring many generations.